Central to the public sense of fair play, central to the government's welfare strategy (central to the Labour government's welfare strategy, come to that) is the belief that work should pay and work is the best route out of poverty. All right thinking people agree. No- one should languish out of work unless they are incapable of work. Sp what should be of the utmost concern to us is that work all too often doesn't pay. Not because social security levels are so generous that they enable a comfortable lifestyle over the long term- they don't- but because millions of… » Read more
NHS North West London has produced a ‘medium-list' of options for hospital closures and shifts in service provision, which will be formally consulted on after this election period is over.
It is expected that only 5 out of 9 hospitals will continue to operate as now.
The nine current hospitals Hospitals have been paired up, with the expectation that only one of the two would remain as a major, 24/7 acute hospital.
This is detailed by Westminster Council's Health Policy committee as meaning:
HAMMERSMITH vs ST MARY'S
CHARING CROSS vs CHELSEA and WESTMINSTER
EALING vs WEST MIDDLESEX
Central Middlesex is… » Read more
Later this summer one of the most explosive consultations on the NHS in modern times will be launched as up to 3 out of 7 hospitals serving North West London face the closure of their Accident and Emergency units. Expect fireworks as plans are set out for the future of hospital services, against a backdrop of the worse squeeze on NHS spending ever seen. St Mary's, the Chelsea and Westminster, Hammersmith and Charing Cross hospitals will all be in the mix- and at least one, possibly 2 of these will end up without ‘ blue light' Accident and Emergency units,… » Read more
Many thanks to the hundreds of you who have been in touch in recent weeks to express your concerns about the NHS and Social Care Bill. This finished its passage through Parliament last night, despite
· massive opposition from right across the medical and nursing professions
· 1,000 amendments during the Parliamentary process
· the refusal to publish the NHS Risk Register, which would have allowed MPs to properly evaluate the advantages and disadvantages of the… » Read more
I have again pledged my commitment to Holocaust Memorial Day by signing a Book of Commitment in the House of Commons to honour those who perished in the Holocaust.
With 27th January marking the 67th anniversary of the liberation of the Nazi concentration and extermination camp, Auschwitz-Birkenau, the Holocaust Educational Trust places a Book of Commitment in the House of Commons every year to give MPs the opportunity to remember those who were persecuted and murdered during the Holocaust - and to support a ‘Legacy of Hope', learning from Survivors' experiences to help create a future free from hatred and… » Read more
Conservative-controlled Westminster City Council's parking controls, and particularly their most recent round of proposals, have generated more local controversy than almost any issue I can remember. And although much of what is proposed and under discussion relates to the west end, Westminster council's parking policies have an impact far wider than that specific local dimension.
That is becaise the issue of parking income, and how it is generated and distributed, needs to be seen in the wider context of revenue-raising and local taxation. As a result, everyone in the local authority of the London borough of Westminster has a legitimate… » Read more
Apart from being a somewhat iconic enterprise locally, the Big Table is precisely the kind of small business that is crucial to the country's economic recovery and the economic health of the area.
It was therefore deeply saddening that Crossrail served a Compulsory Purchase Order for the land on 24th June 2011 to make way for a substantial electrical sub-station as part of the scheme. While the Big Table won a temporary reprieve until January 2012, the closure still appears inevitable.
While the Big Table lies just outside the boundaries of Westminster North its closure is a pressing issue for… » Read more
Having received substantial volumes of constituency correspondence over the last few years I have become increasingly concerned about the problem of subterranean basement developments.
However, it was not until I accepted an invitation to see one of the larger basement developments in NW8 a couple of weeks ago that it hit home to me just what an extraordinary change we are seeing in some of our inner-city communities.
I saw a basement excavation stretching between Hamilton terrace and the mews behind it in St John's Wood. It seemed that the excavation was the size of an aircraft carrier-absolutely vast. It… » Read more
Research recently carried out by the GLA showed that 24% of Londoners are in fuel poverty - meaning that they have to spend more than 10% of their household income on fuel to keep their home in a 'satisfactory' condition.
Many Londoners who are eligible for assistance with heating their homes or with free loft insulation and cavity wall insulation don't know they can get help, or where to find it.
The Mayor's fourth ‘Know your rights' campaign aims to encourage people to find out what support is available by calling the Home Heat Helpline, free on 0800 33… » Read more
Today marks the start of Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish New Year festival. Last Saturday I had the pleasure of visiting the Jewish Liberal Synagogue to meet local children who had taken part in designing Rosh Hashanah cards and awarding a prize for the winning entry (pictured).
» Read more
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